June is National Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Awareness Month. It’s a time meant to raise awareness, understand PTSD better, and end the associated stigmas.
What is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)?
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that’s triggered by a terrifying event — either experiencing it or witnessing it. PTSD leapt to the public’s consciousness when the American Psychiatric Association added the health issue to its diagnostic manual of mental disorders in the 1980s. But PTSD—known to previous generations as shell shock, soldier’s heart, combat fatigue or war neurosis—has roots stretching back centuries and was widely known during ancient times.
What are symptoms of PTSD?
PTSD symptoms are generally grouped into four types: intrusive memories, avoidance, negative changes in thinking and mood, and changes in physical and emotional reactions. Symptoms can vary over time or vary from person to person and may include flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event.
Treatment for PTSD
If you have disturbing thoughts and feelings about a traumatic event for more than a month, if they’re severe, or if you feel you’re having trouble getting your life back under control, talk to your doctor or a mental health professional. Getting treatment as soon as possible can help prevent PTSD symptoms from getting worse.
P.S. Project Pneuma is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization